Books Everybody Should Read #1: Kane and Abel

We all have a book that we just love. 

Being an avid reader of girly chick-lit, my shelves are full of the sort of books you buy in a panic from Asda, before you go on a beach holiday when realise you just don’t have enough magazines for all that sunbathing.

But sometimes, I go for something a little more ‘out there’ and move out of my comfort zone – all in the name of great literature.

For me I don’t have just one favourite book, I have five. So I thought I would share them with you, and I challenge you to not love them.

So part one of my favourite reads is this little beauty:

jeffrey archer kane and abel1. Kane and Abel by Jeffrey Archer

In a word, this book is brilliant. I don’t know how else I can stress to you how literally brilliant it is.

I was given it by my big sis, who recommended I give it a go, and I am SO glad I did.

This is a long book, to the tune of 656 pages. I finished it in four days, at 3am actually – I just couldn’t put it down, it took over my life completely.

I read this at a time when I didn’t have a car and the bus to college was an hour-long ride – I was so engrossed I missed my stop.

I went to bed early to read it, and the night – well morning – I finished it, I had been in bed for six hours, and when I finished the last page, my life felt empty (I had only started it four days before…).

The story follows the lives of two men who live worlds apart, and have nothing in common with each other other than their date of birth – April 18, 1906.

One was brought up in Boston’s upper class world, the other a Pole born to extreme poverty. Their world’s are polar opposites in every way – one’s father dies in the Titanic disaster, the other’s step-father dies at the hands of Russian soldiers as WWI breaks out.

The stories of both men unfold in twists and turns that are never boring, and keep you hooked – it’s a very hard book to put down.

Their two world’s collide in a struggle of ambition, power and ruthlessness in the dream to build an empire, fuelled by the all consuming hatred they have for each other.

The book stems over 60 years and sees three generations as they fight through war, marriage, fortune, and disaster.

Kane and Abel’s battle for success is a battle that only one man can have, and through fate they manage to save and then destroy each other.

I found it a beautiful and compelling read, and one that everyone should have on their bookshelf.

“She only stopped screaming when she died. It was then that he started to scream. The young boy who was hunting rabbits in the forest was not sure whether it was the woman’s last cry or the child’s first that alerted his youthful ears. He turned suddenly, sensing the possible danger, his eyes searching for an animal that was so obviously in pain.”

Have you read this book? I’d love to hear what you think about it so get in touch!

– love Carla x

Book Review: Losing It by Cora Carmack

Bliss Edwards is a virgin. About to graduate and not wanting to hold on to her V-card for much longer, she comes up with the solution to her problem: a one-night stand. The idea is to lose it as quickly and simply as possible.

Her plan is already flawed in so many ways, and when she meets a gorgeous guy – who’s reading poetry in a bar – she feels her luck is in.

Losing It By Cora Carmack Book cover

Smart. Young. Gorgeous. Has an accent. (this didn’t do it for me for obvious reasons, she’s an American girl, the guy a Brit…) What could possibly go wrong?

She gets him back to her apartment, he gets very naked, and she runs – literally freaks out and bolts. There’s a lie about a pet cat and it’s all rather amusing.

Hoping to just lie to her best friend and make out the V-card has officially been swiped she heads to her first class of the year, to find a new, British, professor.

Don’t worry I haven’t ruined anything, we know that it’s teacher that she met in the bar from the blurb on the back of the book.

Losing It was a book I purchased on the cheap a while back, and I admit I have only got round to reading it now. It’s a nice easy read, and is by no means a porno.

It’s nice to laugh at the awkwardness of Bliss, and the near obsession of teacher made my mind wonder at least…

She can however be a tad annoying, the obsessively over-thinking everything was a bit far-fetched, considering she was willing to give it up to any randomer once she was wasted enough. But, I get that she is the female protagonist and that she was obviously nervous and falling hard.

Here are a few snippets of what to expect:

“When I asked a classmate for a rubber, you call them erasers, everyone laughed so hard that I was ready to board a flight straight back to London.” – Garrick

“Let me get this straight… you didn’t have a cat? Did you get a cat just so that you  wouldn’t have to tell me you were a virgin?” – Garrick

I really did enjoy this book and I fully intend on purchasing the rest of the series. It was fun and awkward all at the same time and you can’t blame the poor girl for trying. I imagine a few of us are guilty of a little crush on Sir after all…

– love Carla x